The Cost of Encouragement

by APC on February 03, 2016

Have you shopped for a greeting card lately? I don’t mean just stopping by the “card” section at CVS or Walmart—have you made a pilgrimage to a greeting card store to find “the card?” If you’re like me, finding the right greeting card is quite the expedition. Between finding the right card and the right section of the store, you will need a change of clothes and food rations for several meals at minimum. You can be gone for days!

I adore greeting cards and stationary in ways I can’t even describe. The excitement of receiving a card in the mail for a specific occasion is paramount in my book. And, I cannot relay the emotion I feel when I find a card someone gave me “just because” tucked away in the crevice of my bag to discover at an opportune moment. Those moments are the best—to know someone is thinking of me.

I’ve found the “thinking of you” section at the card store has increasingly downsized. And, on the whole, greeting card stores are near extinction because people have stopped sending them. The cost of cards and postage are definitely factors in their decline, but I also think that we as a human race are fading into a realm of thoughtlessness. We’ve got so much going on in our lives that we forget about what is going on in the lives of others, or just other people in general.

Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do (I Thessalonians 5:11, KJV).

Scripture tells us we should encourage and strengthen each other as much as we can. In this crazy world (and lives), we need a word of encouragement every once in a while. We might need something to put a smile on our face, a hearty laugh in our bellies, or to be a diversion from our present situation.

You and I can encourage so easily if we’d just stop to think about. You may not be a greeting card junkie like me, but in the onslaught of our technological era, could prefer sending an email, text, snap chat, Instagram photo, etc. Pick your edification apparatus of choice and make someone’s day!

If you don’t know who to lift up, no problem—God will show you. Spend some time in prayer and ask Him to put someone on your heart. Before you realize it, God will bring someone (or a group of people) to your mind that He wants you to minister by way of encouragement.

Encouragement doesn’t have to be big or costly. More than likely we have unlimited texting built into our data plans. Regardless of the fact, can we sacrifice the “extra” to make someone’s day? Can we go without our daily Starbucks coffee to buy a “Thinking of You” card and send it through the mail? Can we sacrifice time doing something we want to design a goofy message and send via email? Can we endure writer’s cramp by handwriting a little note? Can we swallow our bashfulness and tell someone verbally they’re doing a great job?

I pray we don’t find our “cost” to be so great that we lose sight of the true cost if we don’t encourage one another. We can start encouraging someone today—it only takes a little bit to do so. We have no idea what our “little bit of encouragement” can do for someone else. Your $3.95 card could just save a soul.